Updated: May 20
By Yulia Bondar
Mental Health Awareness Week is one of many great occasions to raise the importance of mental skills at work.
As recruiters who are looking for unicorns, we often only pay attention to hard skills while searching for the perfect fit. However, concepts like company DNA, shared values, company add etc. are commonly used and practiced in our job. They basically mean “soft skills” or “mental skills” and in the end, they are more crucial for job performance and success. More and more companies are focusing on the right human fit rather than some concrete experience, because - if you are not eager to learn or to get things done - your job success will be very situational and limited.
As TA professionals, we also tend to focus on hard skills when we are busy with our own self-development. Sourcing outside of Linkedin, recruitment marketing strategies, even programming skills - these are the fundamentals we think will bring us to the dream position or high productivity. Of course, it is a fact - you need to develop your hard skills according to the demand of the market, but we do not often realize the way to get there - is the responsibility of our mental *soft* skills.
Mental health can be viewed from many angles, but we propose to use emotional intelligence in supporting strategies to be successful at the work we are doing. A high Level of EQ is highly impactful for Recruitment, as a “People-People” profession.
Emotional Intelligence is the capability to:
Recognize, understand and manage our own emotions
Recognize, understand and influence the emotions of others
It means being aware that emotions can drive our behavior and impact people (positively and negatively), and learning how to manage those emotions – both our own and others – especially when we are under pressure.
When would recruiters need emotional intelligence?
Giving and receiving feedback
Meeting tight deadlines
Dealing with challenging relationships
Not having enough resources
Dealing with change
Dealing with setbacks and failure
Emotional Intelligence consists of 5 components:
Self Awareness - The ability to recognize your moods, emotions, and drivers as their effects on others. It’s a basis for all the other components. In recruitment: A recruiter as a company’s ambassador should be extra conscious about how they are perceived in the eyes of others (when pitching the role or rejecting a candidate). The first step in controlling this is to be aware.
Self Regulation - The ability to control and redirect disruptive impulses and moods, the ability to suspend judgment-to think before action. In Recruitment: All things which come with effectiveness and productivity - managing pipelines, meeting deadlines, being resilient to failure or uncertainty (offer rejected or position closed).
Motivation - Passion and drive to work, not just for objective reasons (compensation, safety, etc), energy, and persistence in pursuing goals. In Recruitment: Our job has its ups and downs with success and the number of hires, but we cannot be driven solely by objectives (number of hires, calls etc). To be really good recruiters we need to build long-term goals and see the purpose of our work - how our actions will impact the whole business/organization. That will make our placings more sustainable and meaningful.
Empathy - Ability to understand the emotions of others, treating people according to their emotional reactions In Recruitment: This one seems obvious, but being a recruiter means constantly putting yourself in someone else shoes - when checking people’s motivation, reactions, and drivers. Being able to define this is crucial at our screening interviews and the ability itself depends on your level of empathy.
Social Skills - Proficiency in managing Relationships & building networks In Recruitment: A good recruiter is “a networker”, who is constantly in touch with the talent pool they are building. Being a partner not only for a company you work for, but also for your candidate can increase their level of trust significantly. And when your candidates trust you you have a lot more power to influence their decision.
It is statistically proven by research that a high level of these competencies is correlated with job success and satisfaction.
The good thing is that, in comparison with IQ, you can increase the level of your Emotional Intelligence by working on developing all of the 5 components.
An individual with high emotional intelligence would have dynamic leadership skills, a good relationship with his superiors, subordinates, and peers, and most importantly s/he would have a high degree of personal satisfaction and success at the workplace.
Therefore, recruiters who want to be successful and grow should focus on developing a high level of emotional intelligence at the workplace.
At wearebridge.io we believe that training in these skills is essential for preparing people for career development as well as personal success and fulfilment.